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Teen’s art wins ride to Washington

Staff reports

A Winnemucca teenager will get a free trip for two to Washington, D.C., to watch his painting go up in the U.S. Capitol.

Eric Wirthlin, 18, an art student at Lowry High School, was selected by Rep. Jim Gibbons, R-Nev., to represent Nevada’s Second Congressional District in the annual art exhibit which hangs in the Capitol.

According to Donna Wirthlin, Eric’s mother, he has won several art awards, including the Nevada Day Art Contest and three Governor’s Mansion awards.

Eric’s father, Larry Wirthlin, was born in Winnemucca, and his mother has lived there 35 years.

She said Eric has been keeping everyone in suspense as to who will accompany him to Washington for the June 24 award ceremony. In addition to his parents, Eric has four brothers and two sisters.

Eric’s painting, named “Freedom,” will be displayed for a year next to winning pieces from other congressional districts.

“I congratulate Eric for winning this year’s Congressional Art Contest, and I commend all of the students from Nevada who participated,” Gibbons said. “All of the artwork submitted demonstrated the impressive level among Nevada’s students.”

In all 37 students participated in the art contest. Eric’s selection was announced last week at a reception held at the Nevada Legislative Building.

Carson High School student Amanda Palmer won first runner-up. Second place went to Breanne Jarrett of Douglas High School. Third place went to Kyrra Watson of Churchill County High School and Cindy Delon of Elko High School. Fourth place winners were Adrienne Jung of Churchill County High School and Carson High School’s Leah Madison. Receiving honorable mentions were Anna Asp of Carson High, Krista Etchison of Dayton High School and James Nagel of Carson High School.

The flight was donated by Southwest Airlines